How to be smart
First of all, I defined smart not by what grade someone achieves on a certain subject, not by how many trophy he achieve and not by how fast he finished high school. But instead, I defined smart by how well some people subdue a field, how people see them as an expert without him telling the world, and how he can spread his knowledge to people without making it confusing. I don't really appreciate people who smart but just use their knowledge to gain benefit for themselves and not for the wider community.
To be smart is not really that hard, you don't have to be a rocket science smart to be called smart ass.
Because I think there's so many fields in this world other than science, math, physics that we can master so we can be an expert in our own field. Here's some of my opinion on how to be smart:
1. Know your passion
to reach the point where you can finally know what your passion is, you have to try to work or learn several different fields. From there, you can actually know which one can make you excited and which one is not. the more excitement you get from learning or working on the certain field, the more you finally realize that that is your passion.
2. Research the trends
After knowing your passion, to the next thing you have to do is to do your research. Surf the internet and the community to know what's in and what's out of date. Read books to improve your knowledge and to know what you can do to improve what's lacking from the field you interested in. If you do the research very well, you can be the first person who came up with the newest hypothesis and theory, and you can be the first person who creates the wildest ideas as verification of your own hypothesis.
For example: you can create your own theory about photography, and make your own workshop about it where you can be the speaker.
3. Don't doubt yourself
Nothing will always smooth along the way, at some point we will hit the rock bottom and stuck at our lowest point. At that time probably we want to quit, gave up all our work, and change the field we've been working on. My suggestion is, don't ever shift your field just because you have small problems or issue. Cuz once you leave the field you love just to work on the field you hate to gain money, you will be stuck with no excitement, no spirit, and you will be a robot who work 9 to five without having the energy to create innovation or a breakthrough. And once you work on a field you don't love, you will barely know anything about it (cuz you're not interested doing your research), and you will be the stupidest person on the company.
At that point, probably you would just wish you could turn back time and use your precious time to pursue your passion rather just to sit on the office desk every day for the rest of your life.
4. Invest your money for knowledge
The Best investment (well other than assets) are Investment for knowledge. Sign up for classes, workshop and seminar to gain your knowledge. The more knowledge you gain, the more you can sell yourself to your business partner, cuz you have many arguments that you present to them.
Last but not least, use your spare time to hang out with people who give you different kind of perspective about another field. you don't always have to hang out or chat with people who share common passion, rather you can get insights from people who work on different field so you can know many things other than your own world. Who knows you can show off your knowledge to them, you can look smart because you have the knowledge that they don't have.